By Travis Smola
The Vicksburg girls’ varsity basketball team found itself needing a solid win, and got it against Allegan on home court on Senior Night. The Bulldogs soundly beat the Tigers 69-36 in a game that was never really in question.
The win came after they struggled against Dowagiac and had a loss against Edwardsburg the week before. For Head Coach Tim Kirby, the game was an important confidence builder.
“We had a good week of practice this week and it just kind of showed tonight,” Kirby said. “We played well, we played hard, and I’m glad to get that for our seniors.”
Maddison Diekman led an aggressive scoring charge for the Bulldogs, putting up 24 points in total. Eight of those points came at the free throw line.
“She’s been playing well. She’s really been our leading scorer, she’s so aggressive on both ends of the court, and that’s what you need,” Kirby said.
The Bulldogs also got some big help from freshman Kendra Cooley, who put up 13 points in the contest including three three-pointers. It was the type of performance Kirby has been hoping to see all season.
“Kendra Cooley, we’ve been looking for her to have a breakout night,” he said. “She’s the freshman that I really expect big things out of. To see her have a big game tonight and gain some confidence, that’s a big deal.”
Other scorers for the Bulldogs included Emma Steele, who put up four points, Karyna Lewis, who had three at the free throw line, Cate Curtis who had a three-pointer, and Makayla Allen who had four points. Torgie Barga had three points.
Scarlet Hosner, Kayla Mottl, and Emily Zemitans all had two points apiece. Overall, the team did an excellent job of spreading the ball around.
“I’ve got six or eight girls who can go off for 20 every night,” Kirby said. “it’s just a matter of sharing the basketball, and who’s making shots. It’s a fun night when a lot of girls get to contribute like that.”
Overall, the team is 6-4, with all four losses coming to some of the top-ranked teams in the area, including perennial powerhouse Edwardsburg. However, Kirby is thrilled they have usually competed with every team they’ve stepped on the court with.
“We’re so young, just the fact that we’re competing with teams is fun, but it’s also promising for the future,” Kirby said. “So, now we’ve got to find a way to get over the hump and beat some of those good teams.”
By Travis Smola